Sweetest, dearest man in my life;
Can you possibly know how much you mean to us? The ladies of this house? I think you don’t, otherwise your mind would be blown & you’d be long gone.
Our love story started in a pretty unconventional way, and it seems we’ve tried to keep that trend alive through these past 7+ years…never taking the easy road, thriving on the unexpected, beating those odds stacked against us. We make it look easy to the outsiders, but we know the truth, and I’m forever eternally grateful that I’ve got you beside me in this. You’re the perfect yin to my yang…up when I’m down, optimistic when I falter, the steady to my tremors. We’ve seen the dark and basked in the light- all of it, together.
I would not be where I am if not for you. Those words are thrown around a lot in life at situations that have not earned them. This is not the case with us. The hours you work, the sweat you pour into projects at mere mention, the slack you pick up when I’m at my rope’s end, that look you give me from across a crowded room that tells me I’m the only one there…these things are not lost on me.
There are three Ladies in your life that sit on pedestals with me. You show your daughters that the real world is a fierce place, fueled by power and all at once ugly and gorgeous. But, more importantly, you show them that home is the safest place they can be. Stability lives here, dreams live here, creativity lives here. Ryan, these girls could not possibly have a better role model than you. They will have to search far and wide to find partners that live up to the esteem in which they hold you. The look in their tiny eyes when you chase them down the hallway all pjs & wet hair & giggles…it’s enough to burst my heart. You love them each individually, expect much from them and they are bound to deliver. They idolize you, they want to be like you. Right now they are downstairs listening to music- dancing, singing, livingroom rockstars: just like their Daddy.
This one time? In a crowd of people at a Chris Daughtry concert, I glanced behind me, scanning the crowd for you. Halfway down a flight of stairs a man’s profile caught my eye. He was headed down the stairs, all at once in a hurry to get back to his friends and patient with the crowded steps. He was hot. I cannot tell a lie. His shirt sleeves were pulled up just far enough that I could see an intriguing hint of muscle. My face went pink, the butterflies started and I got instantly embarrassed. Then he turned a little more to the left and I saw his face: it was you. All these years later…it’s still you. Maybe now more than ever.
So on this, your birthday, these are my confessions. I love you more than my head can possibly comprehend. You know how people always say I’ve never loved you more than right now? This is not a lie. This is what happens when two people build a life like ours. The circumstances swirling around with the gorgeousness of our daughters, the beauty of our home, the memories all over the walls, the sounds of girly giggles and happy sighs (<- those are mine, ahem)…it’s so much more than I could have ever pictured as a young girl when I know for sure it was you I saw in my dreams. I’ve always known it was you.
Happy Birthday Ryan. I love you. I so, completely do.